Kantian Ethics - Essay Example

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Moral theory was founded on the assumption that it is the consequences of human actions that count in evaluating their merit that the kind of consequences that matter for human happiness is just the achievement of pleasure and avoidance of pain. …
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Kantian Ethics
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Download file to see previous pages From the principle of utility pain and pleasure are the only intrinsic values in the world. From this, the rule of utility is derived that the good is whatever brings the greatest happiness to the greater number of people. Most utilitarian theories deal with producing the greater amount of good for the greatest number. Negative utilitarianism requires individuals to promote the least amount of evil or harm, or to prevent the greatest amount of harm for the greatest number of the masses. Since utilitarians judge all actions by their ability to maximize good consequences, any harm to one individual can often be justified by a greater gain to other individuals. Values can be used under certain conditions since they can be used in times of evil or good. Goodwill is intrinsically good; its value is wholly self-contained and independent of its external relations. The value of goodwill does not depend upon the results.
The moral value of the action can only reside in a formal principle 'maxim' the general commitment to act in this way because it is one's duty. The ultimate principle of morality is a moral law conceived so abstractly that it is capable of guiding a person to the right action to every set of circumstances1. Formula of autonomy where the concern of human dignity is combined with the principle of universiability to produce a conception of the moral law for the good of all2.
Moral theory was founded on the assumption that it is the consequences of human actions that count in evaluating their merit that the kind of consequences that matter for human happiness is just the achievement of pleasure and avoidance of pain. The hedonistic value of any human action is calculated by how intense, how long the pleasure lasts, how certain and how quickly it follows the performance of the action being done and how likely it will give more benefits than harm.
The extent of this pleasure brings out the happiness of the community as a whole because it is the sum of each person's interest as an individual. The universal agreement motivates people to do the right thing on the role of moral sanctions in eliciting proper conduct from human beings3. Human beings are also motivated by such internal sanctions such as self-esteem, guilt and conscience because we all have the social feelings on behalf of others, the selfish wish for the good of all may make us act morally.
To avoid feeling bad and blaming oneself, people prefer to act morally to avoid the guilt within themselves if they act otherwise. People desire happiness hence when one person desire his/her happiness it implies that individual human beings desire the happiness of each other and everyone as a whole. Social applications of the principle of utility are fully consistent with concern for the promotion of justice, which involves respect for property, rights of individual citizens. Individual human beings are responsible for their thoughts, feelings, tastes and pursuits, while society is properly concerned only with social interest.
To see that this is adhered to by everyone, the state has to monitor the individual interest so that they prevent individuals from doing harm to others by violating their rights. Utilitarianism therefore can only attain its goal of greater happiness by cultivating the nobleness of the individuals so that all benefit for the good of others. Once many people acquire the happiness they were pursuing or were entitled to, they develop inclinations. They do not mind if one ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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